Targeting the human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) oncogene in colorectal cancer.
Human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) is an oncogenic driver, and a well-established therapeutic target in breast and gastric cancers. Using functional and genomic analyses of patient-derived xenografts, we previously showed that a subset (approximately 5%) of metastatic colorectal cancer (CRC) tumors is driven by amplification or mutation of HER2. This paper reviews the role of HER2 amplification as an oncogenic driver, a prognostic and predictive biomarker, and a clinically actionable target in CRC, considering the specifics of HER2 testing in this tumor type. While the role of HER2 as a biomarker for prognosis in CRC remains uncertain, its relevance as a therapeutic target has been established. Indeed, independent studies documented substantial clinical benefit in patients treated with biomarker-driven HER2-targeted therapies, with an impact on response rates and duration of response that compared favorably with immunotherapy and other examples of precision oncology. HER2-targeted therapeutic strategies have the potential to change the treatment paradigm for a clinically relevant subgroup of metastatic CRC patients.
Siena, S; Sartore-Bianchi, A; Marsoni, S; Hurwitz, HI; McCall, SJ; Penault-Llorca, F; Srock, S; Bardelli, A; Trusolino, L
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